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444

DAVID'S BEAR

All Bears are largely vegetarian and insect feeders; but this Bear
is especially so. It delights in the nests of Termites, and its
energy in destroying these hills for the sake of their inhabitants
Is so great that the name of " sloth" appeared to Sir Samuel
Baker to be an entire misnomer.

Aeluropus, a rare Carnivore with but one species, ^A. melano-
leucus, is not inferior in size to the Brown Bear, and is dis-
tinguished by its largely white coloration. It was discovered in
the mountains of East Thibet by Pere David, and described by
Milne-Edwards1 as a distinct and new genus, the discoverer
himself having named it as a species of Ursus. It is a vegetable-

FIG. 226.—AeZiwojnts melanolewyus.

feeding creature and bulky in form, with a rudimentary tail and
a short broad head; in fact, more like a Bear than a Procyonid
(with which group it is placed by some). The width of the
head, however, is greater than in any other Carnivore; it is
most closely approached in this by Aelurus and by Hyaena.
The molar formula is Pin ^ M ^% The soles are hairy. There
is no alisphenoid canal. The molars are especially large and
miilticuspid,
Fossil Ursidae.—The genus Ursus itself goes back to Plio-
cene   times.      The   well-known   Cave   Bear,    Ursus   spelaeus   of
1 lfou>o. Arch. Mus. vii. 1872, Bull, p. 92 j and JRcchercTies pour sermr & Vhistoire
natwrelTe des Ma-mmijtores, 1868-1874, p. 321. This genus has quite recently
(I^arakester, Trctns. Linn,. Sac. viii. 1901, p. 163) been definitely referred to the
Procyonidae.